More success for North Belfast Communities
Published: Thur, 7 May 2015
Our Shared Communities Programme has helped people from the Ardoyne and Alliance areas gain employment by providing valuable training to facilitate entry into the construction industry.
Funding of £2,500 via our Community Cohesion Unit has enabled 5 people to receive training in forklift operation, and a further 7 people have also received training for the Construction Skills Register (CSR), both valuable skills that have led to employment in construction in local areas such as Girdwood.
JMD Training, Boucher Road, Belfast provided the training for these courses, which allowed local people from both communities to receive training. The forklift training took place over two and a half days, whilst the CSR training covered a range of skills and topics over one day.
Today we are marking the successful completion of both these courses by our local people by presenting them with their well-deserved certificates of achievement. All of the participants have obtained the Green card that enables them to apply for any jobs in the construction sector that become available in the locality.
None of this would have been able to take place without the help and encouragement from the Ardoyne Local Area Network in North Belfast, comprising of Grace Women’s Development, NBWISP and the Wishing Well. The Ardoyne Local Area Network has been instrumental in helping anyone in the local area, and they work closely with us to increase mutual respect and improve the confidence of people particpating in the Shared Communities Programme.
Proof that the training has paid off is told by one participant, Stephen, who now has a job in security, a direct result of training funded through us and Ardoyne Local Area Network:
“I’m really glad I did the training, because now I have a full time job in security. It’s a relief to be able to provide for my family again. I hope this lets other people like me who struggled to get work see that this type of training scheme is worthwhile.”
The skills acquired by those who attended the training covered areas such as:
- Competent forklift operation and basic maintenance;
- Law and legislation relating to forklift operation;
- Health and Safety at work;
- Practical experience in using the forklift;
- Use of protective equipment;
- Working at heights;
- Manual handling and carrying out a safety lift;
- Noise and vibration hazards;
- Accident prevention, etc.
The presentation of the certificates took place at Ardoyne Library on Wednesday 6 May. The local Housing Services Manager, Liam Gunn, was there to present the certificates and congratulate them on their achievement, along with representatives from the local community groups - Grace Women’s Group, NBWISP and Wishing Well. Liam was pleased to be invited, saying:
“I am delighted to be able to present these certificates to the local people today. It is very heartening that some of the participants now have jobs, even though some of them can’t attend today because of their jobs!”
Community Cohesion Unit Manager, Deirdre Crawford, also said:
“Many people are not aware the Housing Executive is much more than just a landlord. Funding to local communities is a vital resource we are keen to promote. The rewards from encouraging community cohesion and building relationships are huge, not just for the local people that are supported but the whole of Northern Ireland. Everyone involved in projects that promote shared communities are developing their community for a much better future.”